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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Nov 16, 2012 7:46pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Interesting New Reviewer

I go back and forth on Red Sky . Michael Gray's writing on this made me think it might be better ( a little better, notice it's near the bottom) , There are about half an ok record's worth of songs here .
Looks like my "essential" section is growing ! Note that "Time out of Mind", and "love and Theft" are next down on my list . Those first 13 or so albums on this list are pretty amazing !

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Poster: light into ashes Date: Nov 16, 2012 11:14pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Interesting New Reviewer

Time Out Of Mind is certainly one of my essentials. (Less so any of the later albums.) I am startled to see Nashville Skyline up so high! I prefer some of the "good to greats" to some of the "excellents," but I can see why they're there. (I often respond more to the sound of an album, or to a few key tracks, rather than comparing song-for-song with other albums - thus, I'm quite fond of the Pat Garrett album.)

I noticed you didn't include the Basement Tapes! Does that mean it's weaker than weak?
It would be a hard one for me to rate since the "genuine" unreleased Basement Tapes are so much better - in fact they're in my essential category too, even as a bootleg.

Then you could throw in the live albums & compilations too... Some of those would soar near the top of the list, in my case. He didn't release many good live albums before the Bootleg Series days, but Hard Rain I thought was great.

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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Nov 17, 2012 7:56am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Interesting New Reviewer

Nashville Skyline is some way a great cover up job . Here we have a less than 30 minute album, with one song being an instrumental , and another being a duet on one of one of his old songs , and lyrics are slight (at the time people though he was deliberately doing this, it wasn't till later albums ,example:Planet Waves, that close scrutiny revealed he wasn't the same . Dylan claims, that sometime in 68 he had a moment where he knew he had lost it . Like the gift had been taken form him . In an interview around the time of Street Legal, he said he was trying to do consciously, what he used to be able to do unconsciously . As producer Bob Johnson said about those mid 60's recordings , "That wasn't him, that was God kicking him in the ass ".
BUT, this is a beloved album for good reason . Much credit must go to the rich twilight sound of this record . Some Dylan' s most loved records are some that have the best "feel", example, Blood On The Tracks . And Dylan's singing is wonderful here listen to him on Peggy Day ( I wish he had a fraction of that ability now ) ! The record feels so good . Thus its position !
I avoided any of the live, "Bootleg series, or archival stuff for simplicity sake !
The unfucked with Basement tapes are a wonder, but still sort of a tangent . They sort of don't fit in with the studio albums, but they are great, beyond question .
Hard Rain was not much liked in its day, but with the exception of that horrible Lay Lady Lay (a song that never seems to work outside the original album, though I like the Everly Brothers version ), is fun, and I like the re-imagining of most of these songs . I like Oh Sister better than the Desire version .
Special mention to the 66 live material, the acoustic sets especially .